Equitable Life Adds Group Critical Illness to Help Protect Plan Members and their Employers

WATERLOO, ON, June 27, 2011 /CNW/ - Equitable Life of Canada® has joined forces with ACE Canada® to offer Group Critical Illness insurance to help protect Plan Members.

"Being diagnosed with and surviving a serious illness or injury can just be the start of challenges for Plan Members," explains Karen Mason, Senior Vice President - Group, Equitable Life of Canada. "Group Critical Illness provides Plan Members who survive a serious illness or injury a lump sum payment in addition to any benefits they receive under the overall Equitable Life Group Benefits Plan."

"This lump sum payment can be used to help cover health care costs, assist in alleviating the financial burden associated with serious illness or injury or can be used for any other need identified by an Equitable Life Plan Member," explains Eddy Levy, Vice President, Sales & Marketing, Life Operations for ACE Canada. "The financial impact of a serious, life-altering medical event can be tremendous and most Canadians are not prepared for this in terms of savings."

In fact, according to the Patient Burden in Cancer study from McMaster University, Canadian cancer patients with insurance were still out-of-pocket between $1,500 and $2,900 a month for a typical duration of 11 months1.

With more than 25,000 men estimated to be diagnosed with prostate cancer2 and more than 23,000 women expected to be diagnosed with breast cancer in 20113, Group Critical Illness is a relevant product offering for Equitable Life Group Benefits clients.

Group Critical Illness through Equitable Life is underwritten by ACE Canada and covers not only cancer, but heart disease, hip and knee replacements, as well as coverage for Plan Members who suffer loss of independence due to these or other serious medical incidences.

"This is a benefit intended to aid Plan Members at a time when they need help the most," says Equitable Life's Karen Mason. "This means that they can concentrate on their health instead of their financial situation and will assist them in returning to their normal life and work more quickly."

About Equitable Life of Canada
Since 1920, customers have been depending on Equitable Life of Canada for financial protection. As one of the largest mutual life insurance companies in Canada, Equitable Life® is dedicated solely to its policyholders. Everything we do is focused on providing them with personalized service, security and wellbeing.

Through partnerships with Managing General Agencies and Advisors, we offer a wide selection of competitive Individual Life and Health, Savings and Retirement and Group Benefits products to meet a range of financial planning and health needs.

www.equitable.ca

About ACE Canada
ACE Canada refers to ACE INA Insurance and ACE INA Life Insurance, subsidiaries  of the ACE Group headed by ACE Limited (NYSE: ACE), and is rated AA- (Very Strong) by Standard & Poor's and A+ (Stable) by A.M. Best Company. ACE Canada, through its underwriting companies, provides insurance products and services throughout Canada. Additional information on ACE Canada and its products and services can be found at www.ace-ina-canada.com. The ACE Group of Companies provides insurance and reinsurance for a diverse group of clients around the world.

1. Patient Burden in Cancer study published by Christopher Longo, PhD and Assistant Professor from the DeGroote School of Business at McMaster University
2. Canadian Cancer Society
3. Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation

SOURCE Equitable Life of Canada

For further information:

Media Relations Contact
James Kaylor
Communications Specialist - Group Marketing
Direct Line: 519-904-8155
Email: jkaylor@equitable.ca

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Equitable Life of Canada

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